Former Action News 5 photographer grateful for gift of life - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Former Action News 5 photographer grateful for gift of extended life

By Joe Birch - bio | email | Facebook

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Action News 5 is mourning the death of beloved former chief photographer Carl Jones.

In 1994, Jones made a rare appearance in front of the camera to share his emotional experience as an kidney transplant patient.

"You know, sometimes this seems like the longest walk," Jones said of walking into kidney dialysis three times a week for three hours.

High blood pressure had weakened Jones' kidneys.

"I have a family," he said.  "I have four kids.  I think about them.  If something happened to me and it not work out, I'd want to see my kids."

For Jones, there was physical suffering and the wait for a kidney donor since no family member were a match.

Jones played football at Jackson State and led Action News 5's team of photographers.  He had a kidney transplant in Memphis in December of 1994.  After some complications, he was home by Christmas.

"Can't help but reflect on Christmas being a time of joy and giving," Jones said.  "Somebody I don't know gave me a gift I can't say how much I appreciate."

In the decade after his transplant, Jones met the family of his kidney donor who had passed away with wishes his organs be given to those in need.

Jones returned to Action News 5 full time and then as a freelancer as he suffered other health problems.  He was always grateful for the gift of an extended life.

"I have a greater appreciation for life now," he said.

To make a gift to the National Kidney Foundation of West Tennessee in Carl Jones' memory, click here.

To become an organ donor, you must sign the back of your drivers license and tell your family of your wishes.

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